#1 Oklahoma 41
Nebraska 0

Nov. 19, 1955 • Memorial Stadium, Lincoln

High-Speed Sooners Smash Huskers, 41-0

Here is a tense portrayal of struggle on the goal — and a sample of devastating Oklahoma power. Efficient Sooner forwards huff and puff against eager Husker linemen ... and the result is Jay O'Neal's touchdown. KENNETH ZIMMERMAN / THE WORLD-HERALD

LINCOLN — Mighty Oklahoma crushed Nebraska in the Big Seven championship play-off, 41-0, Saturday afternoon.

A crowd of 38 thousand watched the powerful Sooners grind the Cornhuskers to bits.

The relentless Oklahoma offensive combining speed, power and finesse, turned the game into a rout after an interesting but one-sided first half.

It was the end of the road for the 1955 Cornhuskers who finished in second place in the Big Seven for the second straight year.

The game was the finale for Husker coach Bill Glassford, whose proteges finished a 5-5 campaign after a discouraging start.

Working the split T to perfection, the Oklahomans elected to stay on the ground as Sooner coach Bud Wilkinson wrote his own ticket concerning the final score.

Once the Sooner juggernaut started rolling (which was early) there was no doubt of the final outcome.

Only Excitement

About the only excitement came in the last three minutes of the game when a half dozen players disappeared into the sideline crowd for impromptu brawling.

The hassle was of short duration and Nebraska's George Cifra and Oklahoma's Byron Searcy were banished. Sooner Hugh Ballard had been chased a minute earlier.

For the Oklahoma faithful, it was just another victory in the long skein the Sooners have been stretching with monotonous regularity.

No Long Bursts

From a Nebraska standpoint, about the only bright spot was the fact Oklahoma did no scoring from long range.

The Sooners had the count 27-0 before they had been able to score from a greater distance than one yard.

Then came the final scoring thrusts from the six and three.

These short scoring jabs, however, were merely the six-point climaxes of galloping drives.

Full Speed—Ahead

The dazzling Oklahomans did nothing at half-speed. They raced in and out of the huddle, blocked with deadly precision and jet-propelled their backs through the line with rapier-like decision.

When the Sooners went to work, they were terrific. Here is their scoring summary:

No. 1—Dick O'Neal from two feet on a sneak. The drive carried 68 yards in 10 plays, mostly inside tackle and used only 6:50. Dennit Morris's interception of a Rex Fischer pass gave O. U. possession.

No. 2—Bob Burris got the last yard on a smash. The Sooners hustled 41 yards in six plays in three minutes. It started after Jerry Tubbs pirated Willie Greenlaw's pass and got back to the Nebraska 41. There was 1:02 left in the first half as Burris scored.

No. 3—Burris crashed form one foot out for the first of two third-quarter touchdowns. The drive started after Billy Pricer had returned the kick-off to the Oklahoma 41. The Sooners used 13 plays, featuring the pitch-out and keeper, and 4:55 to shove the score to 20-0.

No. 4—There were 13 seconds left in the third period when Tommy McDonald dove over from two feet out for the TD which produced a 27-0 bulge. The Sooners covered 55 yards in eight plays and needed only 3:45. The drive started after Leroy Butherus lost possession of Don Erway's pass and McDonald recovered on the Sooner 45.

No. 5—This was a quickie mid-way in the fourth period and boosted the score to 34-0. The march covered 40 yards, the Sooners using six plays and 2:30 with Clendon Thomas taking a pitch-out to score from the six. The Sooners gained possession when O'Neal made a fair catch of George Harshman's punt and the Huskers were penalized to the 40 when end Jon McWilliams, failing to see the signal, tackled the receiver.

No. 6—The Oklahoma finale came with 1:25 left in the game. The Sooners drove 57 yards in 10 plays, using four minutes allowing time-out for brawling. The offensive was launched after Dale Sherrod fielded an Erway kick.

Frequent Fumbling

The game was marred by frequent fumbling, an occupational hazard of the split T.

It was an early Sooner bobble that gave Nebraskans their big thrill.

This came after Doran Post, Nebraska center, recovered a Pricer fumble on the Sooner 36.

With Greenlaw blazing the way, Nebraska hustled to a first down on the 14.

Greenlaw, on the first play, ran the Oklahoma right end for six.

Sooners Too Alert

The next play called for a running pass by Fischer. This strategy gained 11 a minute before.

But this time the Sooners were alert.

Morris, who had just entered the game, picked off the pitch on the Oklahoma six and ran 24 yards before he was dragged down.

During the second quarter, Nebraska got as far as the O.U. 41 only to run out of gas. A Sooner fumble which popped into Post's arms gave the Huskers this chance.

Mild Threats

Nebraska fumbled away two mild scoring threats after the intermission.

An Erway-to-Butherus pass carried to the Oklahoma 45 late in the third quarter but the Husker end lsot control and McDonald recovered for the Sooners.

On the second play of the fourth quarter, Greenlaw broke loose for 40 yards, the longest run of the day. He was tripped by O'Neal on the Oklahoma 40.

The Cornhuskers got only 12 more yards before fumbling a hand-off.

Greenlaw Effective

Greenlaw was the only Nebraska back to penetrate the Sooner defense.

His 6.6-yard average for 14 carries was masde against fierce gang tackling.

Willie's percentage was better than any Sooner who tucked the ball under his arm more than five times.

A dozen Oklahoma backs toted the ball and all did well although Jim Harris, the master T magician was lost early in the first quarter by a shoulder injury.

Eighth Straight Title

The title was the eighth consecutive Big Seven crown for Sooners. Before starting the string they were co-champions twice.

It was Oklahoma's twenty-eighth consecutive victory, twenty-ninth straight game without a defeat, fifty-third game in the conference without a defeat and the one hundred fourth consecutive game in which the Oklahomans have scored.


More coverage

World-Herald post-game coverage (PDF)

Series history

Nebraska is 38-45 all-time against Oklahoma.

See all games »

1955 season (5-5)

Hawaii Sept. 17
Ohio State Sept. 24
Kansas State Oct. 1
Texas A&M Oct. 8
Pittsburgh Oct. 15
Missouri Oct. 22
Kansas Oct. 29
Iowa State Nov. 5
Colorado Nov. 12
Oklahoma Nov. 19

This day in history

Nebraska has played 16 games on Nov. 19. See them all »

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